iMovie, Final Cut Pro, and Final Cut Express are three major video editing tools of Apple Inc. Final Cut Pro is a creative and professional editing tool for professional movie or video editors. It provides editors with sophisticated editing, compositing, effects and audio tools. Final cut Express also requires advanced editing skills.
In contrast, iMovie is design for the ordinary Mac users who want to add some spice to their digital life. It's quite intuitive and the built-in library makes it very easy to organize your owned videos and movies. In just a few steps, you can add movies to your website, publish them on YouTube, and create versions for iPod, iPhone, and Apple TV. iMovie is a practical tool for Mac users and users can edit all types of videos with the proper applications. The format compatibility of iMovie is a headache for many people, so this article is to provide you a detailed guide on how to import, edit and export your videos or movies in iMovie and the whole article will be divided into three major parts.
Part 1: Import videos or DVD clips to iMovie
MOV and MP4 format videos can be imported to iMovie directly. However, the formats of videos downloaded from You Tube or BT are usually not compatible with iMovie. And sometime you might want to import, for example a WMV format video in your computer to iMovie. In such cases, you can refer to "http://www.moviesmac.com/tutorial/import-wmv-m2ts-video-imovie-mac.html#126 (how to import video to iMovie)".
Many Mac users want to import their camcorder videos to iMovie for editing .Certain camcorders can be automatically detected by iMovie when connected to Mac with USB or firewire cable. You can refer to http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1014 (Apple's instruction) for more information. According to the model of your camcorder and the version of iMovie you access to, you can find out how to connect your camcorder to Mac. It's a pity that I found the information provided by Apple is not very practical and even kind of confusing. I tried every way according to the instructions and my HD videos just didn't show up in iMovie. Many Mac users confront the same problem. Maybe Apple can find a way to solve this annoying problem some day.
Before any good news comes out, I have my own way to deal with it. That is to convert my camcorder videos to iMovie supported format. It's convenient and trouble saving. The formats of the camcorder video are generally AVI, MOV, MOD, TOD, MTS, and M2TS and the video converter I now used supports all those formats. For detailed information about converting and importing, you can refer to the "Import videos to iMovie" tutorial above.
Note: Many camcorders have their own management software to organize your photos and videos. But some of them only have PC version. In this case, you can use USB to connect your camcorder to Mac and copy the photos and videos to your computer. If you know the file extension of your videos, search it in Spotlight to find out your videos quickly. Make sure that your Mac shows your hidden files.
DVD movies are useful source for our movie projects. We can extract the audio of the movie or add our own songs to movie clips. If you want to http://www.moviesmac.com/tutorial/dvd-imovie-mac.html#126 (import DVD clips to iMovie) for editing, here is a detailed tutorial for your information.
Part 2: Frequently used editing functions of iMovie 08
Audio extraction: Select a range of frames from which you want to extract from project browser. Then right click on the selection and choose "Reveal" in "Event Browser". Hold down Command-shift and drag the video you selected then the audio was extracted. You can use it as background music.
Video Trimming: Enable the "Show Fine Buttons" option in iMovie's preferences and then click on a button displays an orange border to trim the videos.
Apply transitions: Go to File---Project Properties. Select Add Automatically in Transitions section, then choose a proper transition type and set the lengths.
Cropping and Rotating: Select the clip and you'll find a crop button in the upper right corner of the clip. The rotate button is on in the "Viewer" window.
A http://www.apple.com/findouthow/movies/imovie08.html#tutorial=camcorder (detailed official tutorial) for your reference
Note: There are some new features in iMovie, you can go to http://www.apple.com/ilife/imovie/guided-tour/ (Apple's iMovie Guided Tour).
Part3: Share your edited movies with your friends, family or the world
When you finished editing the videos, go to "Share" and select a way to export your videos. You can export it to iTunes or You Tube directly or you can just select "export movie" to save it to a folder you want.
Take export to You Tube for example.
Step 1: Go to "share"---"You Tube" and click "Add" in the pop-up window
Step 2: If you don't have a You Tube account, create one first. After you log in You Tube website, return to iMovie and click "Confirm sign in"
Step 3: In the pop-up window, choose a category and give a title and a description of your movie. Click "next" and then Click "Agree" in the next window
Step 4: Click "Finish"
From: http://bitapple.wordpress.com/2009/06/02/import-export-imovie/ (Bitapple.wordpress.com)